Collabris Dungeon Master’s Guide
Collabris is one of the many continents in the world. It’s history is centered in the many races that have struggled to survive under the tyranny of leaders that have consistently taken over the lands. The most recent leaders to take over the land were the Titans, who were defeated thousands of years ago. Since then the many groups that inhabit Collabris have been able to grow and prosper.
In ancient times, the titans ruled over their primitive peoples. The titans often times waged wars against each other, frequently shifting territorial boundaries. Out of all the titans, Raxis was the most powerful. With the aid of his wife, Basharix, they conquered the land north of Broken Spine Mountain. Using the natural barrier of the mountain to his advantage, he fiercely defended his lands.
Sick of being under the regime of Raxis, Durok, the Lawbringer of Kalazanbaar set off to defeat Raxis and end the reign of the titans. Durok travelled with the aid of the Orc chieftain Kuroth, Adam The Civil, and Kitu, The Champion of Crows. The four set off to the Ban-Tuur Steppe to confront the Humans and gain access to the volcano Tuur, who’s fires were so hot and powerful it is said that it could forge magical artifacts. Adam was able to move the group a little way into the Ban-Turr before conflict arose. Kuroth fell in battle against the Ash Wind and the party was captured. Brought before the titan Namura, the party was certainly going to die. Durok began to speak swiftly, explaining that with Namura’s aid, the party can kill Raxis, freeing Namura to seize the land. Namura allowed the party to pass and the Humans fell into a deep rage, beginning a war against Namura, leading to Namura’s defeat at the hands of Liasel, the Elven Titan, and the quick enslavement of the humans as the Elves swarmed the divided lands of the Ban Turr from the south. The party moved swiftly, avoiding the incoming Elven armies. Eventually the party made it into the volcano. The party only made it so far before Adam The Civil turned on Kitu and Durok. Adam made a pact with a dark spirit that wanted Adam to slay Raxis and claim his throne. Kitu and Durok Defeated Adam and continued into the mountain. Eventually they reached the lava fields and Durok forged the war hammer Ethereal, The Plane Smasher, a hammer so strong its blows could be felt within different planes. Fleeing from the volcano, Kitu and Durok pushed through the Elven war machine and Human resistance. When the two made it back safely to Kalazanbaar, Durok called out Raxis, challenging him for his thrown. Raxis showed his nine heads that day to fight Durok, Basharix coming to spectate. Kitu and her Crows began to fight Basharix, making sure that she couldn’t stop Durok from killing Raxis. For the first time Durok wielded Ethereal. Raxis charged Durok, eager to make an example of him and then go to defend his wife. As Raxis charged at Durok, Durok swung Ethereal, breaking the titan's back and driving a opening in the mountain, leveling the part of the mountain into a canyon way. After seeing this, Basharix fled, slaying the other titans in a fit of rage. Weak and depressed, Basharix disappeared, never to be seen again. With the threat of the Titans gone, Durok sealed Ethereal away. Leaving it to the defense of the Crows.
The map of Collabris below does not show off the entire continent, just a portion. It extends both a little ways east and west, and a great distance north into the White Wastes and the Expanse.
Durok founded the dwarven kingdom Kalazanbaar when he killed the Titan Raxis, and split the Broken Spine mountain.
The Fall of Kalazanbaar
A civil war between the dwarves of Kalazanbaar and Korim, the smaller kingdom to the north. When the alliance of the Duegar and Drow emerged from Below, the Dwarves of Kalazanbar found themselves fighting a two front war, and lost. The Dwarves of Korim are now reviled by many because winning their war had the unintended side effect of annihilating their brothers to the south.
The underground empire of the Drow. Former allies of the Duergar, once the two nations overthrew Kalazanbaar they instantly began fighting and now experience a cold war of spies and assassins always on the brink of tipping over into open conflict. The men of the Northern Sanction consider this something devoutly to be avoided. As soon as war breaks out between the Drow and the Duergar, the Maw will become impassable. And trade with the outside world via Titan’s Gate, will end. Within the vast expanse of Dar-da?thar are several kingdoms, ruled by the Starless Court , and their Empress Veylastravix the Dark Star, the Fate Weaver. Her device is a black star on a deep purple field. The Empress is an Oracle, subject to fits of prophetic ecstasy when the Goddess of the Drow has some important information to impart.
The upper, civilized, kingdom of the Duergar. The lower kingdom Ull’vok fell years ago and the Duergar there went mad and became the Derro. A theocracy ruled by the Hierophant Xadraxim who speaks for the Duergar Creator Deity Molak, the God of Nightmares.
The dwarven kingdom to the north. The Crucible The voting council of the three most powerful houses, thereby preventing ties in the legislature. Great House Aurum, ruled by Thane Ygnal the oldest house and first among equals on the Council of Brass. Voted against the alliance with Ardenia. Great House Holderhek ruled by Thane Holderhek, sided with House Argentum in the vote on an alliance with Ardenia. Great House Argentum ruled by Thane Helmoral, the youngest of the three great houses on the council, brokered the alliance with Ardenia. This peace has brought her house great wealth, and power and this threatens Thane Ygnal and house Aurum.
Various houses have been collaborating on a project called “warmachine” for centuries to build constructs, both large and small, to aid in a fight against the titan's if they ever return.
The Northern Sanction
Granted to the men of the north by the dwarves. It is the last remaining civilized area of Men. Broken now into three kingdoms. Once forested hills, the explosion of the mountain blasted massive rubble across the land. Flattened and deforested kinda, the humans live in lands that have been fully cleared of debris but massiv thin stretches of rocky forest snake through the land. Pockets of orcs still inhabit those woods. Also that pass in the mountain needs to be more dangerous. It should be one thin, snaking road carved through the the rock piled valley swarmed with drow, duergar, and brigands. Merchants higher powerful but sometimes unsavory people to move things through the valley. Gangs based on moving thing through there? Various conspiracies around that.
Allies of Korim. No peace yet with the orcs tribes. Ruled by Queen Marina Mahala, Ardenia is famous for its bardic college: the College of the Whispered Song led by Master Troubador Cristoph. Ardenia’s bards travel the kingdoms all the way to Titan’s Gate, collecting and spreading news.
Suspected by the other nations, but never proven, Queen Marina uses her bardic college as a spy network keeping the larger, more prosperous kingdoms of Haldrim and Cardus at bay.
Lots of half-orcs in this area, because of the proximity to the Urshok Hills and the Red Sun orc tribe. Made a truce with the orcs to the north, pissing off Sethi, a legion captain whose men took to the hills and became the First Bandits. They were soon joined by others. Sethi is now Lord of the Bandit Tribes. You often get just straight up Orcs hanging out here who are outcasts from the Red Sun tribe. Ruled by King Cyric the Grey, in his 91st year, he passed away. His daughter who is to become queen is Princess Elise, lost her husband to the Orc Warfather Valkun. His youngest daughter, Princess Miranda, is an enchanter wizard and sees her sister as unfit to lead, fearing she will go to war with the Red Sun. Quickly after the death of King Cyric the Grey, Princess Elise is poisoned and Princess Miranda goes missing. Master Troubador Chrisoph, a friend of the royal family, steps up and proclaims himself to be the emperor until Princess Miranda is found.
Princess Miranda made a deal with Master Troubador Chrisoph to have Elise poisoned, and he will be made the Advisor of the Queen. He turned on her and had her sold to the Orcs, to be delivered to Below, in exchange for potions of domination to help him rule his new empire (A Night Below plot hook).
The largest standing army, but they use it for defense because they’re under attack. They can’t commit troops to defend The Maw, they’re defending against the Men of the Scale Hills. Ruled by King Unathi Aboubacar, the teenaged ruler only recently came to the throne when his father, Far, died in battle against the Snake Men (Yuan-ti) of the Scale Hills. Unathi was raised to be a king and a knight and at fifteen is already a capable horseman and warrior. Eager to avenge his father, he is advised by the Knight-commander Duncan.
Unbeknownst to the people, the bards, even the young king, Far is not dead. He fell in battle and he was kidnapped by the Yuan-ti, who intended to ransom him back to Duncan. But Duncan is happy with Uthani on the throne, because the young king is in favor of an aggressive campaign over the mountains, into the Scale Hills, there to wipe out the hereditary threat of the Snake Men once and for all. King Far was a realist, a pragmatist, willing to negotiation. Duncan did not approve. And raised Uthani to be the king Duncan always wished Far would be. Only two people know that Far is alive, Knight-commander Duncan, and Bishop Lane of Bahamut
The port city built and defended by the men of the Northern Sanction. A representative from each kingdom of the Northern Sanction rule over the city.
The city is overflowing with crime, with nearly no rules and laws being enforced. Outsiders bring and take slaves to be sold, drugs are moved easily, and people are killed in the streets. All of the representatives that rule over the city are corrupt.
The Burnt Hills
Home to several bandit tribes all descended from a regiment of Haldric troops who rebelled when Haldrim made peace with the Orcs.
The haunted wood, formerly a nation of High Elves defeated by the Drow to the south after their victory against Kalazanbaar. There are still High Elves here, but they wander the wood in mourning. The drow sacked the High Elf capital of Vellardin. Killed the King and Queen of the White Iris Court. The wood is now populated by giant spiders, hill giants, Ettercap. Now Duke Oranis, The Lord of Autumn, the last surviving member of the White Iris Court is in mourning, his wife and children, slaughtered by the Drow. He is a paladin of the High Elf god. He refuses to take up the mantle of nobility and the High Elves follow his lead. They call his noble retinue the Court of Fallen Leaves. Most of the elves follow the lead of their Duke and want to fade away, but some seek revenge against the Drow. They call themselves the Court of Winter and follow Lady Verit, the Countess of Willow.
The Court of Winter has made deals with the Duergar to give them mages as slaves in return for dark steel so that they can fight back against the Drow. (A Night Below plot hook)
The Haunted wood is plagued with hidden entrances into both the Underdark and the Shadowfell, which is causing all sorts of odd creatures to crawl through the forest.
The swamp is ruled by Lizardman tribes. The lizardmen ambush human traders for their metal. They serve the Queen of Stone, Magora the Medusa. Children of the dead titan Raxis. Ruled by their chieftain Xartan.
? The red scale Xanthor tribe, led by Xartan
? The black scale Oran tribe, led by Mallok
? The green scaled Kuroth tribe, led Hedora.
The ruined city of Coromagus, left over from a previous unknown civilization. Explored by the Elf, Lady Maradel, who sought its knowledge and discovered something that cursed her, turning her into The Queen of Stone, Magora the medusa.
Coromagus is a city built by aliens long ago, a metal colony straight out of a science fiction movie. The radiation and foreign germs, chemicals, and fumes kill anyone who enters. Through advanced science and magic, Maradel was able to survive and became Magora. She is the only citizen of Coromagus, for who ever settled it is long gone. All of the Lizardmen that travel to her to deliver messages return to their tribes insane from what they have witnessed and die soon after from disease and poisoning.
The Ban Tuur Steppe
“Ban Tuur” means the Children of Tuur. Animists who see gods in everything, the greatest of which is the Volcano Tuur, Tuur is the Father of Fire. they are horse lords of the south. Fierce nomadic warriors who raid their neighbors and make life difficult for people trying to cross this region. The Ban Tuur believe Tuur's ash is holy and paint themselves with in before combat. They call their elite cavalry, the Ash Wind. Their priests are the Firespeakers who build ritual bonfires to commune with their god, and create the funeral pyres they use to dispose of their dead. Led by their chieftain, the Gan, a hereditary title named for the first ruler of the horselands. As a rite of passage for their adolescents, they raid the road from Spineguard Keep to Titan’s Gate. The men of the Northern Sanction consider this an act of war, but the Ban Tuur cannot be negotiated with. Their response is always “children must learn to be adults. What can be done?” The volcano is known as Tuur to the nomads, they make no distinction between the volcano itself, and the god it represents. Called the Basalt Throne by the Northern Sanction. Its fires are so powerful, magic artifacts can be created. The men of the north want it, but the steppe nomads protect it and have no use for its magic forge.
The elves of the veil live here. They call the forest V’ael (Immortal Shroud), and humans interpret that as “Veil.” Humans are happy calling it the Veil because the forest is constantly flooded with fog. The Elves of V’ael are immortal as long as they stay in the forest’s mist. Once they leave, they become mortal.
Since its founding, a thousand years ago, they have adopted an isolationist policy and avoid all contact with the outside world. No true maps exist of the Veil for they all seem to be different, and outsiders caught within the Veil are oftentimes executed.
There are two facets to the government of the Veil. First, is the Gremio, 20 officials made of the top minds of each respected type of artisans work. They believe that people are the basic need for three things: learning, creating, and improving. Those things better society and they find ways to assist the Veil in boosting those three things from their respected fields.
The second facet is the Sabio Consejo, where the five wisest men of the Veil debate on laws and efforts proposed by the Gremio before they’re enacted.
All Wood elves, High elves, and Half-elves age twice as slow while in the Veil and have advantage on death saving throws. Additionally, they gain +1 extra health per health healed from magic or hit die.
Basharix lives deep in a cavern in The Veil, in an eternal slumber. As she sleeps, she cries. Her tears cause the mist to form. She will awaken soon and the mist will dissipate.
Arabic like Dragonborn of the desert. Civilized, not nomadic. Constantly warring against the Yuan-ti to the east, and the Thri-kreen to the west (off the map). Ziris, the Glass City, the Shining Star of the Sand is the capital city. Literally made of stone and glass. The dragonborn fashion glass weapons and armor using their fire-breath. Dragon-glass, also known as Zirathnian Steel is light and strong, durable and also readily accepts enchantment. A democracy, the Grand Vizir is elected by the Council of Seven, leaders put in place by the people of Zir. Currently S’vaaj, the Snake-eater, is the Grand Vizir. Technologically more advanced than the Northern Sanction, the Men of Zir fashion elaborate clocks and timepieces. they have hyper accurate maps of the stars, and their procession through the sky. The calendar of Collabris is the Zirathian Year. Their mathematics are far in advance of any other culture in Collabris, and have advanced approximation and estimation, on the cusp of discovering calculus. Their nation is bound by the Glittering Way, a network of glass roads connecting their cities, travelled along by chariot. But in the deep desert, the more primitive, older, classical dragonborn civilization still use wind powered sand-skiffs. Their knights ride giant salamanders into battle.
It is no secret who leads the scientific advancements in the world, an organization called the Zirian Sky Cartographers. They are almost done building their first observatory and will then have access to the largest telescope ever built. They hold many secrets, withholding their discoveries and technologies if they feel the world is not ready for them. A men in black styled task force called the Zirian Sky Cartographer Field Task Force investigate fallen meteors, and rough up anyone who threatens the Sky Cartographers. The armor they wear looks almost to be alien itself. They are currently trying to investigate Coromagus.
Weapon: Weapons made of Zirathnian steel have a +1 non-magical bonus when attacking a target who is not wearing Zirathnian steel armor.
Armor: Armor made of Zirathnian steel have a +1 non-magical bonus when attacked by a weapon that is not made of Zirathnian steel.
The Scale Hills
Home to the Yuan-ti, who battle the Dragon Men of Zir. They are being driven over the mountains into Cardus. Worship the dead titan Raxis. They were his children.
The home to the Red Sun tribe of Orcs. Once, Urshock stretched south to the mountains, including the Burnt Hills, but the men of the Northern Sanction cut back the forest and drove the orcs north. They now call themselves the Kanrokk, “The Homeless” because the humans of the Northern Sanction, deforested the plain and evicted the orcs from the southern territory. There is a blood feud with the men of Sanction, only recently quenched when Haldrim made peace with the Orcs. But Ardenia can make so such peace without alienating the dwarves of Korim who they depend on for trade. Warfather Valkun – Negotiated the peace with Haldrim in exchange for access to the port city. He wants trade with the other regions of Collabris. Warmaster Valarak, sister to the Warfather, leader of the Warhounds, the army of the Orcs who charge into battle with their dire boars. Beastmaster – Kennel master of the dire boars that accompany the Warhounds into battle. Bonebreakers – The elite death commandos of the Warfather. Assassins who employ garottes, and literally take the heads of their victims. Sunbreaker – Amarax the Shaman, who begins his rituals at dusk when the sun falls.
Mountain home to the Nara, the griffon-riding Goliaths living in cities carved into the rock. Skilled masons and stonecutters. Their capital city of Hethra lies below the highest peak of the mountains, Kuraya. At the top of which lives U’shaka, the God of the Goliaths, believed to be a Prince of the Air Elementals and his servants, the Nine Winds, the Dukes of Sharash. The griffon riders are called the Mar-Ushaka, the Breath of God. They are the religious caste among the Goliath and serve as messengers between the mountainous cities.
The Dead Kingdom
Once a kingdom of men, formerly the Southern Sanction, destroyed by Kaleth-varr, the druid Archlich who sold her soul to the God of the Death and became a lich to stop the Southern Sanction from cutting back the forest to make their civilization. Undead in this setting are the dead legions of the Southern Sanction. The armies, the farmers, men and women who tried to carve a civilization out of the wilderness. The three kings of the Southern Sanction and their generals became the Nameless. Eleven Wights who had their names taken by the Lich and ride nightmares.
The Titans ruled Collabris, and the Speaking Races. They are each represented in many forms and guises. They are not worshipped, they are not gods, and they are often unknown by mortals.